HHM CPAs Appoints New COO

Chattanooga, Tenn.-based HHM Certified Public Accountants (FY18 net revenue of $30.2 million) has hired Beverly Edge as its COO to support firm growth. Pam Morris, who formerly filled the role, has transitioned to CFO.

“I have no doubt that these two talented professionals will work together seamlessly to drive firm success,” says MP Donnie Hutcherson. “We are honored to have Beverly join us and grateful for Pam’s contributions to the firm.”

Edge, a practicing attorney for over 20 years, will lead the firm’s operations as it continues to grow and expand to new markets. As COO, she will oversee all administrative and operational functions of the firm. Prior to her new role, she was a member at a local law firm where she handled mergers and acquisitions, real estate transactions, aircraft transactions and general representation of closely held businesses.

Morris will oversee the firm’s financial operations. She has over 30 years’ tax and accounting experience and is founder of Freight Depot Accounting, a customized bookkeeping firm for startups and small businesses and an affiliate of HHM CPAs.

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SEK Admits New Member of the Firm

William Oyster

The members of Hagerstown, Md.-based SEK (FY18 net revenue of $20.5 million) announce that William Oyster, a manager, has been admitted into the partnership as a member.

Oyster has more than 20 years of experience and is an integral member of the firm’s government audit niche, nonprofit audit niche and low-income housing niche. He directs more than 70 engagements each year and has significant experience in performing single audits. He also performs peer reviews of other CPA firms, which helps improve the firm’s own audit procedures.

Additionally, he is an instructor of in-house training programs on governmental and nonprofit accounting, a presenter at our annual client seminars, and has been invited to speak at numerous external events. Additionally, he is a member of the firm’s accounting and auditing committee.

Oyster joined SEK’s Carlisle, Pa., office in 2017.

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The 2020 IPA Accounting Firm National Benchmarking Surveys are Open for Participation

The 2020 INSIDE Public Accounting (IPA) Annual Survey and Analysis of Firms is now open to all accounting firms in North America. The results of the annual survey are compiled in the IPA National Benchmarking Report. The data is also used to rank the IPA 100, 200, 300 and 400 firms, and the coveted IPA Best of the Best firms. If you would like to participate, please contact our office.

More than 550 accounting firms, ranging in size from $1 million to more than $1 billion in net revenue, participated in IPA’s 2019 Annual Survey and Analysis of Firms. All firms in the U.S. and Canada are encouraged to take part in one of the longest-running benchmarking surveys on accounting firm management.

Firms who would like to participate – at no cost – can contact IPA for details. Participating firms will receive an executive summary of the IPA National Benchmarking Report and will be eligible to be named a 2020 Best of the Best firm or an IPA Top 400 firm.


…May 2019 through December 2019: May 4, 2020

…January 2020 through March 2020: May 29, 2020

…April 2020: June 15, 2020

Note: IPA will not accept any submission after June 30, 2020.


In conjunction with the National Benchmarking survey, IPA has launched the Firm Administration, Human Resources and Information Technology surveys. These surveys dig deeper into the operations and best practices of participating accounting firms across the U.S.

Your firm must complete the IPA Benchmarking Survey and Analysis form in order to participate in any of the internal operational surveys (Firm Administration, Human Resources and Information Technology). If you would like to participate, contact our office.


If you fully participate in the survey, your firm will be included in one of the largest annual management of an accounting practice (MAP) survey in the country. You will:

  • Become eligible to be ranked among this year’s top firms in the IPA 100, IPA 200, IPA 300 and IPA 400.
  • Become eligible to be named an IPA Best of the Best firm.
  • Receive a complimentary copy of IPA’s August 2020 newsletter, which highlights the annual IPA 400 firm rankings, along with a detailed financial and operational analysis of the IPA 100 firms.
  • Receive complimentary imagery and press releases if your firm is named an IPA 400, a Best of the Best firm or a Fastest-Growing firm.
  • Receive an electronic complimentary copy of the 2020 Executive Summary of the IPA National Benchmarking Report. If you participate in any or all of the internal operational surveys, you will also receive a complimentary executive summary when published in the fall.
  • Receive preferred pricing on accolade reprints for marketing purposes.
  • Receive preferred pricing on the 2020 IPA National Benchmarking Report, the internal operational reports and other benchmarking tools.
  • Be given preference as a source for articles written by IPA throughout the year – an excellent opportunity to market your firm.
  • Gain a competitive advantage and grow your firm with industry insight from the independent benchmarking leader in the nation.


All confidential firm data, including salaries, compensation, income, etc., will be held in strict confidence and will NOT be shared or publicized in any of the final reporting. We take extreme pride in our ability to collect this data to assist the profession and are now celebrating nearly three decades of surveying accounting firms across the globe.

Please contact IPA at survey@plattgroupllc.com with any concerns or questions. IPA conducts a thorough review of each survey submission for omissions or errors and will reach out to the contact person named on the submitted survey form for any clarifications / updates. Some data, such as firm name, MP(s) name, firm net revenue and organic growth may appear in the IPA newsletter (if accolades are given).

BeachFleischman Announces Julia Miessner Becomes Shareholder

Julia Miessner

Tucson, Ariz.-based BeachFleischman (FY18 net revenue of $27.8 million) has announced that Julia Miessner has been admitted as a partner.

Miessner is the practice leader for the firm’s financial forensics and valuation services group. She works closely with attorneys and clients in Arizona as a litigation consultant and expert witness for civil and criminal litigation cases. She also performs complex financial calculations, authors reports and testifies in connection with cases involving marital dissolution, economic damages, lost profits, fraud, and probate and trust matters.

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PKF Texas Admits Martin Euson to Partnership

Martin Euson

Houston-based Pannell Kerr Forster of Texas (FY18 net review of $26.2 million) announces that tax director Martin Euson has was admitted to the shareholder group on Jan. 1.

Euson’s experience includes advising businesses and their owners on federal income tax matters, and he also provides strategic buyers and private equity investors with U.S. tax due diligence and tax structuring services in connection with acquisition and divestiture transactions. He joined the firm in 2016.

SEK Admits New Member of the Firm

Kelli Cobb

Kelli Cobb

Hagerstown, Md.-based SEK (FY18 net revenue of $20.5 million) announces that Kelli Cobb, manager, was admitted to the partnership on Jan. 1.

Cobb, joined the Hagerstown office in 2004, provides accounting, consulting and tax services to the firm’s small business and individual clients. She specializes in small businesses involved with residential and commercial real estate activity.

SEK, formerly known as Smith Elliot Kearns & Co., has five additional offices in Pennsylvania –  Camp Hill, Carlisle, Chambersburg, Hanover and York. With 26 members and a staff of 150, SEK serves individuals as well as business clients in a variety of industries including construction, employee benefit plans, health care, local government, manufacturing and nonprofit.

LaPorte CPAs & Business Advisors Admits New Shareholders

Wendi Berthelot

Metairie, La.-based LaPorte CPAs & Business Advisors (FY18 net revenue of $27.8 million) announces that Wendi Berthelot and Micah Stewart have been admitted as equity directors of the firm.

Micah Stewart

Both are based in the firm’s Baton Rouge, La., office and were most recently income directors.

Berthelot is the leader of LaPorte’s real estate industry group and has been with the firm since she started her professional career in 2003. As an audit director, she provides a variety of services to her clients, including audits of closely held for-profit entities, as well as nonprofit organizations.

As a director in tax services, Stewart is a leader in both the firm’s transaction advisory services group and its Tax Cuts and Jobs Act planning committee. Prior to joining LaPorte in 2011, Stewart was an associate attorney for a large regional law firm where he concentrated on tax planning for families and businesses and tax incentive planning. He was previously a manager at a Big 4 accounting firm in New Orleans, where he focused on international taxation and general business planning.

M&L CPAs to Merge With Adams Brown Beran & Ball

Great Bend, Kan.-based Adams Brown Beran & Ball (FY18 net revenue of $24.2 million) announced that Wichita, Kan.-based M&L CPAs, will become part of ABBB, expanding the firm’s Kansas presence to 15 offices.

The combined firm will now have 32 professional staff and a total staff of 46 in Wichita. Total employees in the firm will grow to 205. M&L CPAs also has an office in El Dorado, Kan.

“We have identified key growth areas for the firm, and Wichita is one of those areas,” says MP Brian Staats. “This increased presence will allow us to help more businesses within our industry specialties with customized solutions.”

With all the changes happening within the CPA industry, M&L recognized the need to put itself in a position to better help its clients with deeper solutions.

“There is a lot of synergy between our firms,” says Sam Seward, founding shareholder of M&L. “Together, we are a much stronger firm in terms of what we can offer to businesses, as well as to our team members.”

All current M&L shareholders ­– Seward, Curtis Dean and Arlen Hamilton – will be joining the firm’s leadership team.

“Over the years, other firms have reached out to us about a possible merger,” Seward says. “We always said ‘no,’ but we really like ABBB’s dedication to the Wichita market and its commitment to serving smaller communities like El Dorado. We are confident this is a good fit, allowing us to continue serving our clients while providing new opportunities to our team.”

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Caler Donten Levine Expands in Florida

West Palm Beach, Fla.-based Caler Donten Levine Cohen Porter & Veil (FY18 net revenue of $22 million) is expanding with a new office in Stuart, Fla. Tax shareholders Thomas Pence and Martin Woods, and senior tax manager Patrick Mangan will lead the team at the new location.

“Since our initial launch in 2017 in Martin County, our practice has experienced extraordinary growth,” says Pence. “Our commitment to providing superior accounting services and active community outreach has facilitated the need to expand into a larger, more permanent space in Stuart.”

Pence, who has been with Caler Donten since 1996, focuses on corporate, partnership and individual taxation. Woods has been with the firm since 2011 and provides tax compliance and tax planning services to business and individuals, as well as the restaurant and hospitality industry. Mangan focuses on income and estate tax planning and compliance, and individual, trust and partnership taxation. He has been with the firm since 2016.

Caler Donten provides accounting services in the areas of audit, tax, family office, business valuation and litigation support. The firm was recently named the “Best of the Best,” “Fastest Growing” and “Top 200 Firm” by INSIDE Public Accounting.

Christine Miller Elected to Janover’s Executive Committee

Christine Miller

Christine Miller

Garden City, N.Y.-based Janover LLC (FY18 net revenue of $31.3 million) announces that partner Christine Miller has been elected by the partners to Janover’s executive committee to serve a two-year term, effective Jan. 1.

Miller, the firm’s first female partner, has been with Janover for almost 24 years. She serves on its quality control committee and oversees engagement training and assurance team projects. She looks for new ways to develop and grow firm business, and she makes it a priority to mentor and train junior associates, the firm announced.

“She brings with her fresh ideas, new perspectives and additional energy to this committee,” says MP Mark Goodman. “I have no doubt that she will continue to contribute to the growth and strength of our firm in her new role, now and in the future.”

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